American jailed in Zimbabwe after allegedly tweeting about president

O'Donovan's lawyer, Obey Shava, says police have not yet charged her but they claim that "tweets emanating from her IT address are insulting to the president".

The AP also reports that the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights say they have represented almost 200 charged for allegedly insulting the Zimbabwe president in recent years. O'Donovan made no statement in court and showed no emotion as the request was dismissed.

Ms O'Donovan is accused of tweeting "We are being led by a selfish man and sick man", and posting a photo suggesting Mr Mugabe is surviving on a catheter. The subversion charges carry up to 20 years in prison.

She's alleged to have insulted President Mugabe in a recent tweet on her personal timeline.

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O'Donovan, who attended New York University and moved to Zimbabwe a year ago, said the allegations are "baseless and malicious" because someone is still posting on the Twitter account.

Martha O'Donovan works for social media outlet Magamba TV, which targets youth and describes itself as Zimbabwe's leading producer of political satire.

Mugabe's stepson with his wife and first-lady Grace, is thought to have recently imported two British-built Rolls-Royce vehicles, according to local media reports.

O'Donovan's arrest comes a month after Mugabe appointed Patrick Chinamasa as minister of a new cybersecurity ministry targeting crime on social media and other websites.

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The New York University graduate has called herself a manager for Magamba TV and a "media activist".

Frustration is growing in the once-prosperous southern African nation as the economy collapses and the President, in power since 1980, is already running for next year's elections.

Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights says it has represented almost 200 people charged for allegedly insulting Mugabe, the world's oldest head of state, in recent years.

Martha O'Donovan is charged with subversion and insulting the president for allegedly calling Mr Mugabe a "sick man" in a tweet, according to the Associated Press.

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